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[genet-news] GMO-FREE PRODUCTS & SEEDS: Submergence-tolerant non-GE rice released as variety in the Philippines

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SOURCE: Philippine Rice Research Institute, Philippines

AUTHOR: Press Release


DATE:   03.08.2009

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The first submergence-tolerant rice variety in the Philippines was released during the 27th Council Secretariat Meeting on July 7.

NSIC Rc194 (aka Submarino 1) is IR64 infused with submergence tolerance gene (Sub1), which was discovered by the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the University of California-Davis from an Indian rice variety FR13A.

?Submarino 1 is a non-genetically engineered rice plant that can survive, grow and develop even after 10 days of complete submergence in water at vegetative stage,? said Dr. Nenita V. Desamero, DA-PhilRice plant breeder and team leader of the on-farm testing of submergence rice in the Philippines.

Under favorable condition, Submarino 1 will have the same yield performance as IR64 (4.5 t/ha), but under complete submergence, Submarino 1 will survive and recover.

Submarino 1 matures in 112-116 days with a plant height of 90-95 cm. Desamero, however, advises farmers not to grow Submarino 1 in blast- and tungro-stricken areas.

Before the 2008 wet season (WS), Submarino 1 was first introduced to farmers in San Antonio, Nueva Ecija, which is a catch basin of the neighboring municipalities during the rainy season.

Recently, DA-PhilRice, together with the 12 DA-Regional Field Units, has started conducting adaptation trials of Submarino 1 and other Sub1 lines such as Swarna-Sub1, IR49830-7-1-2-3 and PhilRice lines in selected municipalities around the country.

For the seed increase of Submarino 1, 0.3 ha is allotted for the production of breeder seeds and 0.5 ha for foundation seeds this 2009 wet season, but will expand in the 2010 dry season. More commercial seeds will be made available to target farmers by 2010 WS.

The collaborative project of DA-PhilRice and IRRI ?Implementation plans to disseminate submergence tolerant rice varieties and associated new production practices to Southeast Asia? is funded by Japan?s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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